TECHNOLOGY

CVS offers ‘buy online, print in store’

BY Dan Berthiaume

CVS sees sales potential in selfies.

The drugstore chain is leveraging technology from Kodak Moments, a provider of photo products and services, to enable a print-to-store service for Google Photos users. Consumers will be able to order high-quality prints directly from their Google Photos app for same-day pick-up at CVS Pharmacy stores. Google has made this service available through participation in the Kodak Moments Prints partner application programming interface (API) program.

Accessible via iOS or Android as well as through Google Photos on web, the service will provide more than 7,400 printing locations at CVS stores across the country. The ability to order prints from Google Photos for pick up at a nearby CVS Pharmacy store is rolling out across the U.S. and will be broadly available in October 2019.

“With a majority of U.S. consumers currently printing photos and over a third of those planning to print more in the future, making prints a reality for Google Photo users for pickup at CVS stores nationwide is a natural next step,” said Nicki Zongrone, president of Kodak Moments. “The Google Photos app is all about ease and convenience, which are the same benefits we’re focused on providing from a printing perspective with our retailers.”

Printing services for digital photos are becoming an increasingly popular omnichannel retail offering. Grocery giant Kroger is piloting digital photo printing kiosks from Print Mates in five Atlanta-area stores. The unattended touchscreen kiosks enable customers to instantly print high-quality photos directly from their smartphones or social media and cloud storage accounts.

Fellow drugstore chain Rite Aid is also testing the market for turning digital photos into physical products. The company recently debuted Rite Aid Photo, a one-stop shop photo website that enables customers to create photo books, calendars, stationary, greeting cards, canvases and wall décor, and photo prints and enlargements. Customers can build a photo library from their computer, mobile camera roll or Facebook, and receive free shipping on all photo enlargements, creative and gifting items.

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